Government funding to help Bundaberg veteran organisations

Wednesday, 29 August 2018

Federal Member for Hinkler Keith Pitt has today announced funding for essential advocacy and welfare services for veterans, serving members and their families, war widows and widowers in the Bundaberg region.

Mr Pitt congratulated the two successful organisations which would share in $56,773.70 through the Building Excellence in Support and Training (BEST) grants program.

“The BEST grants are an important part of the Coalition Government’s commitment to support ex-service organisations providing welfare advocates to support veterans and their families,” he said.

“The Returned and Services League of Australia Wide Bay and Burnett District and the Vietnam Veterans’ Association of Australia Bundaberg and District Sub-branch Inc, provide an essential service to our local veterans and ADF personnel.”

Returned and Services League of Australia Wide Bay and Burnett District Inc President Don Davey said there are a number of projects the BEST funding helped run.

“We’ve invested in a mobile welfare office that travels around the region with a qualified advocate, able to assist veterans with the processing of claims and to arrange other things like replacement medals, walking assistance for a war widow,” Mr Davey said.

“This mobile office travels from Cooroy in the south to Rockhampton and as far west as Moura.

“A lot of smaller towns don’t have a pension office, so the mobile welfare office means we can still reach people that need our help,” he said.

The RSL have many trained volunteers that visit with veterans, take then to medical appointments, assist with shopping and many other items that our older veterans can no longer perform. The BEST grant from DVA allows the RSL to cover the expenses of over 150 volunteers to carry out this activity.

To assist the RSL have purchased dedicated welfare vehicles and in the Wide Bay/Burnett area they are located at Agnes Water, Toogoom, Bundaberg, Gympie, Mary Valley and Cooroy.

“This BEST funding from the Australian Government enables us to purchase the necessary office equipment to support these volunteers. Without this funding from DVA the smaller RSL Sub Branches would struggle to provide this support to our veterans,” Mr Davey said.

Mr Pitt said a total of five organisations in the Hinkler electorate were successful under the BEST program, with $202,435.59 in funding to benefit veterans in the region.

For more information about BEST grants head to: https://www.dva.gov.au/best                           

The successful organisations in Hinkler are:

HERVEY BAY

 

Returned and Services League of Australia Hervey Bay Sub-Branch

$49,552.88

Veterans of Australia Association Inc

$47,448.85

Vietnam Veterans’ Association of Australia Hervey Bay City Sub-Branch

$48,660.16

BUNDABERG

 

Returned and Services League of Australia Wide Bay and Burnett District

$53,685.00

Vietnam Veterans’ Association of Australia Bundaberg and District Sub-branch Inc

$3,088.70

TOTAL

$202,435.59

 

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